Cardiff City FC – Bluebirds Against Modern Football

“Against Modern Football” is a general slogan and campaign, originating amongst Ultra groupings in Serie A (Italy) ”No al calcio moderno”. It’s a broad term, but a good term to describe our fight. It encapsulates football supporters disillusionment with football’s drift from being a sport into being part of the entertainment industry alongside X Factor and all that other overpriced glamoured up shite that people spend their money on because TV tells them so. Football has lost it’s working class roots. Extortionate ticket prices, Police restrictions, Sky TV’s influence on fixtures, and so on and so forth are killing the game. But most importantly, it’s about the sad diminishing voice that supporters have nowadays in the way their football clubs are run. Cardiff City being the prime example, no narrative whatsoever with supporters when owner Vincent Tan decided to wipe out 100 years of history and tradition, to start his own Franchised, Malaysian FC using our clubs shell. We just want to be able to watch football and support our team with the same freedoms our Fathers did. Or, as true Cardiff fans want our club back to even watch! Because some of us will never step back inside Cardiff City Stadium until our badge and colours are reinstated at the very least. We made all this stuff in protest to what has happened at Cardiff City FC.

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This is Our Culture – Contre Le Football Moderne.

Our Swedish brothers over at Our Culture recently came up with these shirts, which will be quite a running theme on here for the time being it feels. These guys recently put together a selection of perspectives from around Europe in their native languages about Modern Football and to finish off the articles they brought out these excellent tee shirts, Against Modern Football, or rather in French, “Contre Le Football Moderne” is a slogan which describes our lack of faith in the modern game. Why are a bunch of Swedes making tee shirts in French you ask? Simple, because France and particularly French as a language signifies passion and romance, just like our love and passion for what was our game and football culture. Your Culture, Our Culture. Photos taken on a sunny Monday off of work at Caerphilly Castle & Roath Lake, Caerphilly and Cardiff, South Wales.

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Wednesday June 6th 2012, The day my football club died..

Today as a football fan who has spent probably thousands following my club home and away, I received what feels like the final kick in the teeth from the business that is Modern Football. If leaving our great historic Ninian Park, with all it’s atmosphere, intimidation and history wasn’t enough. If the new all-seater soulless bowl they now play in, not unlike any other sterile ”football” stadium wasn’t enough. If the jobsworth stewards who demand we sit down, arms folded and not have any fun watching football wasn’t enough.. then today truly is, enough. At 9am this morning, despite promises from our owners that our history and tradition would remain, Cardiff City Football Club, my beloved Bluebirds, were rebranded. Replacing our bluebird with a red dragon, desecrating our famous blue kit, and replacing it with a red one, and why did they do this? To make the club more commercial and profitable in the country of Malaysia… supposedly the red is apparently lucky and teams that wear red are more successful. That of course will make little sense to any Cardiff fan who also follows their red kit wearing country, WALES! The Welsh Dragon replacing the Bluebird apparently makes the club more commercial to audiences in both Wales and Malaysia as it is both of our national symbols… well, newsflash, the Welsh have a national team for that, and if any Malaysians out there are truly real football fans, then they’d support their local Malaysian club. This of course all comes with the promise of 100million pound investment from our owners, which will no doubt win over the plastic and fake jester hat wearing elite in our Fanbase.

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‘Sound and Vision’ from The Casual Connoisseur.

So this release has ruffled a few feathers.. and taken several forms before coming into existence. The image, mostly iconic for it’s appearance on Joy Division’s ‘Unknown Pleasures’ album comes from an original computer illustration of eighty successive periods of pulses produced at the Arecibo Radio Observatory in Puerto Rico in the late 1960s. Later appearing in several scientific articles and encyclopedias where it gained it’s attention. I obviously love it for the JD connection and that incredible album, it’s in no way original to the band however. North West England’s finest have done it again with these.. three different shirts, with three different printing techniques. Raised white print, Silver foil and solid black. The quality and attention to detail is there, and whether you want one for it’s original purpose or for the more famous reason, I assure you, you wont find a better quality version of this image on the market anywhere in T Shirt form. We shot the tee shirts over 2 weeks during a sun-scorched May. Cardiff, St Athan & Beddau. South Wales.

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Exploration – Forgotten Industry.

Cwm Coke Works, Beddau – South Wales. 

A very large site to the North of Beddau in the Rhonnda Valley. Born in the 1860s when Coal pits were sunk in the area, the site eventually opened as Cwm Colliery in 1909. As industry moved on through the century, the site expanded and in 1958 the Cwm Coke works as they remain today came into existence. At it’s height the colliery was producing hundreds of thousand of tons of high quality, low sulphur coal per year. Much of this was processed at Cwm coke works, into high-grade coke suitable for foundry use. For those unaware Coke isn’t just a refreshing beverage or glamorous drug. It is also the name for, a solid carbonaceous material which is derived from low ash, low sulphur, bituminous coal. It is used as a fuel, and as a reducing agent in smelting iron ore (to reduce the iron oxide in order to extract pure Iron). The area the works is situated, Beddau, grew as a town around the Colliery as industry grew. Beddau was originally a small collection of farmsteads at the junction of four crossroads. It was marked on an 1833 map in Welsh as, Croesheol y Beddau, ‘crossroads of the graves’ (Yes, Beddau means Graves). To elaborate on that bit further, Criminals were often hanged at the crossroads, as an example to other villagers.

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Exploration – Holiday Camps.

The Boys Village, St Athan. South Wales.

Opened on August 8th 1925, the camp was the inspiration of the Ocean Coal Company as a holiday camp offering Boys of the South Wales Coalfields an escape from the unhealthy atmosphere of Valleys Mining Communities. To play and be free, in the countryside near the beaches. The buildings of the Boys Village included a dining hall, dormitories, a gym, swimming pool, workshops, a church and even a war memorial. There was also a full-sized cricket pitch, putting green, tennis courts, football and rugby grounds and a pavilion on the site at some point. In the 1940s it was requisitioned by the military for training use during WW2 but returned to civilian use in 1945 after the war. With the growth of cheap and affordable holidays abroad as well as the Tory lead destruction of the South Wales Coal Industry the site fell into decline and eventually closed it’s doors for good in 1991. Not much remains today, the chapel, the swimming pool (minus its roof), gym hall, dormitories, and the dining hall. Some features still intact, but years of vandalism, drug abuse and the like have certainly taken their toll on the site. Some famous Welsh footballers went there as kids, notable mentions being; John Hartson, Alan Curtis & Clayton Blackmore. Even undefeated Welsh Boxer Joe Calzaghe had been there by all accounts.

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Purchasing April 2012 – Norse Projects and Folk Clothing.

Couple of sale buys only whilst London Magistrates Courts rape me for every penny I have (Fuck Football). Norse Store from Copenhagen had two things on sale I’ve been after for a bit now. First, a Norse Projects Hunter Beanie, made from 100% Australian Merino Wool and hand crafted at Italian Lanerossi wool yarns. Bit late for the winter now mind… Second, a pair of Folk Loose Fitted Canvas trousers, nice and airy these. A boy can definitely have too many pairs of LVC so needed the change.

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